The Government is in the process of acquiring 24 MH-60R Seahawk Romeo maritime combat helicopters with associated support systems and weapons. As part of this process a joint industry working group has been formed by our department and the Department of Defence to support industry.
On this page you will find information about the project, the working group, and opportunities for industry.
What is AIR 9000 Phase 8 project?
Department of Defence project AIR 9000 Phase 8 seeks to acquire 24 MH-60R Seahawk Romeo maritime combat helicopters, associated support systems, and weapons. These will replace the existing capability provided by the Royal Australian Navy’s 16 aging S-70B-2 Seahawks, and the cancelled Seasprite project. The primary roles of the MH-60R are Anti-Submarine and Anti-Surface Warfare, while secondary roles include surveillance, search and rescue, and utility functions.
The MH-60R is a “military off the shelf” solution, and the aircraft will be acquired from the United States Navy (USN) under a Foreign Military Sales (FMS) arrangement. This means that the USN is the prime contractor.
All aircraft will be delivered in standard USN configuration, with minor modification work scheduled to occur during the period 2018 – 2020. The project will also necessitate limited modifications to both the Anzac class frigates and Hobart class air warfare destroyers, and the AIR 9000 Phase 8 program office is currently planning this work.
The Defence Materiel Organisation (DMO) aims to deliver the first aircraft in 2014, and to reach Initial Operating Capability, in 2015. Final Operational Capability, including all ship and aircraft modifications is planned to be achieved by 2023.
For more information, please see the AIR 9000 Phase 8 project page.
What is the joint industry working group?
The formation of an Australian Government MH-60R joint industry working group was announced by the Minister for Defence on 16 June 2011. This was part of the second pass approval announcement for the MH-60R project. The joint working group has been formed by the Department of Defence and the Department of Industry, Innovation, Climate Change, Science, Research and Tertiary Education.
The Departments provide support to, and act as points of contact and referral for industry.
Doing business with MH-60R contractors
The MH-60R program is a large, long term naval helicopter program based on the United States Navy’s program to acquire up to 300 new MH-60 series aircraft.
There is some opportunity for Australian companies to participate in the global supply chains of MH-60R Team Romeo prime contractors (in the future, the sustainment of MH-60 in Australia and Asia-Pacific region). However, there is no guaranteed work share and Australian companies need to actively seek opportunities by engaging with the global supply chain offices of Team Romeo members.
Team Romeo members are Sikorsky Aircraft Corporation (airframe manufacturer), Lockheed Martin (mission systems integrator), General Electric (engines), Raytheon (sensors) and CAE (aircrew and maintenance simulators).
The department's joint working group can be contacted via the Defence, Aerospace and Marine Industries Section:
Related information on Department of Defence websites: